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TikToker says JCPenney fired her after she went on maternity leave

A woman on TikTok said JCPenney fired her for not showing up to work after she took maternity leave and gave birth a day before her due date.

The woman, called the user @saerosmith on TikTok, said the incident happened more than 5 years ago, but she chose to share the story on TikTok only recently.

The original video has received more than 670,000 views. She also posted a “story time” video explaining what happened.

TikToker said her due date is September 12, so she tried to apply for maternity leave before that.

JCPenney allegedly gave her the paperwork to apply for Family and Medical Leave, which she said was filed through a separate company called J Time at the time. Her supervisors ask her to fill out the paperwork and send it to J Time, and it will be approved.

“So I sent all that in, and they ‘never got it.’ They ‘never got it,” TikToker said, using quotes.

She added that she had called the company several times and even protested the paperwork several times, but the company insisted it “never received it.”

Finally, TikToker gave birth at 10pm on September 11, one day before the due date. She said JCPenney called her on September 12 to see if she had updates on her pregnancy and she told them she had had a baby the night before. They told her they would put that information into the system.

A few weeks later, the TikToker went to JCPenney with her newborn and asked how she could resume the schedule again, she said. The store’s general manager told her she was fired.

The manager apparently told TikToker that although she called to leave her shift on September 11, she was scheduled to work September 12 and for the next two weeks. Because TikToker didn’t show up on her schedule or make official calls, the company labeled her “no call no show” and fired her. Since she was fired, she has been put on the “no retraining” list.

“I was like what the hell, I was crazy. I’m still angry about it,” said TikToker.

Luckily, she was able to find another job within two weeks, she said.

Some viewers urged TikToker to sue JCPenney, but she said “I don’t have time for that.” She also pointed out that it has been more than five years since she was fired.

However, she said in her TikTok caption that “if this happens to other people, they should absolutely take action, I just never want to deal with it.”

However, one viewer disagreed, saying her lack of action helped the company continue to do the same to other soon-to-be parents.

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Responding to comment, TikToker said, “I agree. I should say/do something then. Unfortunately I didn’t, and I’m more worried about finding another job than going through this.”

Neither TikTok users @saerosmith nor JCPenney immediately responded to Daily Dot’s request for comment.


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*First published: December 28, 2021, 4:34 p.m. CST

Cecilia Lenzen

Cecilia Lenzen is a journalism student at the University of Texas at Arlington and a freelance reporter for the Daily Dot.

https://www.dailydot.com/irl/jcpenney-fired-woman-on-maternity-leave-tiktok/ TikToker says JCPenney fired her after she went on maternity leave

Mike Sullivan

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